As we continue through our second year of social distancing, wearing masks and enforcing public safety, some of our favorite indoor activities become possible again. However, with a newfound appreciation for outdoor activities that give us a little more breathing room, destinations with a mix of both outdoor and safe indoor activities are quickly gaining popularity. Lancaster, Pennsylvania, is one of these destinations that has a variety of unique and safe attractions both inside and out.
Galleries and Museums
Opened in April of this year, the Snyder Museum of Early Lancaster County Decorative arts features late 18th-century to early 19th-century furniture, silver, clocks and portraiture in Pennsylvania. Named after the late John J. Snyder Jr., the gallery welcomes visitors to browse over 230 objects created by Lancaster County artisans. Beyond John J. Snyder Jr.’s personal donations, the gallery also features long rifles provided by the Kauffman collection. John J. Snyder Jr. was not only responsible for collecting the gallery’s items, but also was a part of the team that founded The Heritage Center of Lancaster County and the Historic Preservation Fund of Lancaster County.
For auto fanatics, Lancaster is also home to an antique car museum, Barry’s Car Barn. Inside the barn, visitors can find American muscle cars, primarily from the 1950s to 1970s. Camaros, Mustangs, Firebirds, Corvettes and more line the aisleways, and if looking closely, visitors can also find a few hidden gems from other iconic decades for American cars.
Bike, Climb and Play
For tourists and locals looking for more exhilarating experiences, Lancaster has plenty of opportunities to get outside and get hearts pumping.
Lititz Bikeworks, located in Lititz, offers bike rentals, shares, fittings and repairs. To experience the versatile and beautiful backdrop of Pennsylvania’s towns and farmland, book a bike share reservation. The 14-mile, out-and-back trip follows the Warwick-to-Ephrata Rail Trail and ends in the heart of Lititz. There, riders can stop to shop, grab a bite or rest at Lititz Spring Park. Throughout the ride, there are plenty of bathroom stops and places to take pictures amidst the rolling hills and Lancaster countryside.
Chiques Rock Outfitters offers exciting ways to experience the Susquehanna River with paddling and bicycling trips.
Paddle for an hour, two hours, a half day or full day on single or tandem kayaks. No matter how long the trip, basic instruction is included with all kayaking services, making the trips accessible for all experience levels.
For those that prefer to enjoy the river with dry feet, Chiques has bike rentals and rides that follow the 14-mile Lancaster County River Trail. Along the way, bikers can stop at the Trailside Trolley which serves snacks, treats and refreshments for anyone in need of a break and some replenishment.
Chiques Rock Outfitters also has Pedal and Paddle packages for when just one activity isn’t enough adventure for the day.
For folks traveling with young ones, a visit to Dutch Wonderland is a must when coming to Lancaster. Voted one of the Top 5 Best Kid’s Parks in the World by Amusement Today magazine, Dutch Wonderland has 35 rides and attractions that will easily fill a full day — or even a weekend — with exciting and interesting family activities.
Duke’s Lagoon water play area is the best first stop on a hot May day with two large water slides, cabanas and plenty of snack shacks like Sharky’s Grill. Exploration Island features 22 life-like dinosaurs along the Prehistoric Path, as well as boat rides on gondolas or track races on Turnpike cars.
Wherever the itinerary takes you, be sure to book reservations in advance to ensure a safe and stress-free visit to Lancaster, Pennsylvania.